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Help finding the right SAK

Discussion in 'Multi-tools & Multi-purpose Knives' started by gull wing, Apr 5, 2012.

  1. gull wing

    gull wing Basic Member Basic Member

    May 4, 2002
    I'm looking at the Swissarmy Knives sites and my head is spinning, so many to look at.
    I want one with few blades and tools(four max, less best), for a thin handle thickness.
    3 1/2" handle....(longer might be ok)

    I have an old Tinker(I think?), it's too thick.

  2. Smaug


    Jun 30, 2003
    That's a tough one, partly because you didn't tell us which tools you want, and partly because the Tinker is already one of the thinner models, and you're already not happy with it.

    The Alminum "Alox" models have thinner handles, but then you lose the toothpick and tweezers. Take a look at the Cadet, which is a bit thinner and shorter than the Tinker.

    I'm also a fan of the Manager model, which is much smaller but still has a good selection of tools.

    There's the Compact model, which is the same thickness as the Tinker, but shorter and has scissors instead of an extra blade and dedicated can opener.

    The last one I can think of from Victorinox that might do you right is the Bantam, which is only one layer thick and a bit shorter than the full size Tinker, but only has the big blade, combo tool, and toothpick and tweezers.

    There may be a Wenger model that meets your needs, but I'm not up on their catalog.
  3. kvaughn

    kvaughn Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    The E.P. is a Farmer with a small sheepfoot blade instead of the can opener. Total blades=Spear point large blade,sheepfoot ,awl,screwdriver/bottle opener and one of the best saws ever put in a pocket knife.Alox scales and 3 layers and no annoying lanyard ring bump. My EDC for years now. Check it out.--KV
  4. gull wing

    gull wing Basic Member Basic Member

    May 4, 2002
    Thank you.

    Sorry to be unclear. The main intrest is the spear shaped blade, others no big deal.
  5. jackknife

    jackknife Gold Member Gold Member

    Oct 2, 2004

    I've had one for a number of years now, and it makes a great edc pocket knife. Thin, with just two tools, a blade and a combo tool, that open at opposite ends and are off just one spring. The combo tool is good for many uses, and the spear blade will handle anything you need in a day to day suburban or urban environment. You can drop it in a pocket and forget it's there.

  6. Mud Shrimp Moe

    Mud Shrimp Moe

    Nov 6, 2011

    You should definitely look at the Alox models, if a main blade is your top priority and a thin knife is what you prefer. The Alox solo is just a main blade. The Bantam adds the combo tool. I own the Alox Bantam and can tell you it's crazy thin ... great for pocket carry but a bit too thin for comfort if you are going to be using the knife for a long time. Most cutting I do is quick, so that's not a big deal.

    Another Alox model I love is the Electrician, which is much like the Pioneer or Rancher models. These three only differ by changes to the can opener tool. The Pioneer has a can opener. The Electrician has a sheepsfoot electrician's blade. The Rancher has a pruning blade.

    Try the Alox models. They are thin and tough.
  7. Smaug


    Jun 30, 2003
    If all you need is the spear point blade, check out the Sentry. Their description is kind of funny though: "The perfect one blade multi tool." Wait. What?

    They make a model just like that, but with two blades, called the Pocket Pal. Same size.

    Lastly, if it has to be at least 3.5", they make a few versions of the Sentinal model, some one-handed, some not, with or without pocket clip:
  8. Harayasu


    Jun 18, 2009
    There are multiple great options actually. However, if you only want the blade, then I'd recommend the alox Victorinox Solo. A functional blade and very robust alox scales.
  9. gull wing

    gull wing Basic Member Basic Member

    May 4, 2002
    So the aluminum ones are thinner, good. So far looking at the electrician......
  10. sqoon


    Jan 1, 2010
  11. Smaug


    Jun 30, 2003
    Also, the Soldier (original design) which is identical to the Electrician, except that it has an awl instead of an electrician's blade.

    ...and the Cadet, which is slightly smaller, and has a nail file/cleaner instead of the awl or electrician's blade.
  12. Harayasu


    Jun 18, 2009
    Both have an awl. The difference is that the Soldier has a can opener / small screw driver and the Electrician has at that position the Electrician blade.

    The alox Soldier is discontinued now, but the Pioneer-series is still produced. The Electrician, Pioneer, Pioneer Rancher, etc. are members of these series.

    Be aware that the alox models are quite addictive; they do not only come in different variations, but also in different colors.
  13. rankor


    Oct 26, 2009
    How about the Small Tinker?
  14. gull wing

    gull wing Basic Member Basic Member

    May 4, 2002
    :eek:Oh no Alox is addicitive, should have known.
    Ordered the Cadet. It's shorter than the 3 1/2" I had stated, but think the 3 1/4 might not have so large a lump in my pocket. Plus the Alox scales and only two rows of tools help in that as well. I get the nice blade which is my main want, the other tools are a plus.

    As I said first post, i have an old Tinker and it's the only guide I have. I may have to rethink later. As Harayasu said, Alox is addicitive.:)

    Thanks for the input.
  15. Smaug


    Jun 30, 2003
    Good call on the Cadet. I bought one for one of my longest-time friends. He carries it on his (extremely clunky) keychain. That's been probably 10 years ago, so I bet all the paint is chipped off of the shield now.

    Alox is only addictive to the folks who feel like they want to have every variation of the same model of a given thing. I think Case has a lot of collectors like this.

    The 3-1/4" size is a great size for pocket carry. I had a Small Tinker back in the 80s and was surprised to find that they'd made it bigger when I lost it and went to replace it. Now they carry it again. But the Alox-handled Cadet will be that convenient length, and ALSO thinner. Lastly, the nail cleaner tip on the file can probably be pressed into service occasionally as a flat phillips.
  16. Smaug


    Jun 30, 2003
    You're right. I need to pick one of those up some time. Some time before they're discontinued, that is!
  17. Mud Shrimp Moe

    Mud Shrimp Moe

    Nov 6, 2011

    Great call on the Cadet. You'll definitely feel it's thinner and lighter than the Tinker. No doubt about it. Frankly, the Bantam is too thin for a lot of people. You'll have more functionality with the Cadet as well. You'll like it. I'm confident about that. The Cadet is perfection. The only reason I didn't suggest it earlier is I thought the 3 1/2" length was a hard requirement for you.
  18. Doug Add

    Doug Add

    Jan 9, 2012
    This is one of the reasons I have resisted the urge to buy an Alox SAK.

    I just got my first nylon scaled one back in January, and already have three. In my defense, two of them are Rescue Tools that I keep in each of our cars.
  19. Voodoosix


    Jun 6, 2011
    the 2 that i like the best for EDC use is the Sportsman

    the Sportsman is the same as the Tinker with a corkscrew in lieu of a phillips screwdriver and a nail file/cleaner instead of a 2nd blade. for Vics i prefer the corkscrew as the can opener doubles as a phillips and corkscrew is great for knots and allows storage of a micro screwdriver. (for Wengers i opt for the phillips as the can opener on those doesnt double as a screw driver) the Sportsman also swaps the secondary blade for a nail file/cleaner (which i find myself using much more than another blade).

    and the Cadet

    same top side load as the Sportsman. Alox handles and no toothpick/tweezers.

    add a micro screwdriver and a straight pin to the Sportsman and it's pretty loaded for being so small and slim (plus i like the file/nail cleaner vs secondary blade). for $10-$20 its an often overlooked hot rod.

    i dont care for the Sportsman II however as it has some very cheap scales on it.
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2012
  20. znapschatz


    Jan 24, 2005
    If the scales don't appeal, that's a personal call, but the "cheap scales" may be superior to the high end SAK plastics. They are tough, resist solvents that can damage cellidor, and somewhat grippier, less likely to slip when wet. Those are reasons I like my Sportsman II for knockabout, not to mention the reverse snobbery of carrying a high quality pocket knife got at a Target clearance sale for $7 :cool: .

    Too bad the trademark Swiss shield wears away, though. You never know when a vampire repellent might come in handy :eek: .

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